The Launch Services Program was established at Kennedy Space Center for NASA’s management of Expendable Launch Vehicle (ELV) missions. The program is involved with the International Space Station, NASA space and earth science programs, as well as support for the national security community, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and international partners.
Expendable Launch Vehicles available for missions include United Launch Alliance’s Atlas V and Delta II rockets, SpaceX’s Falcon 1 and 9 rockets, Orbital Sciences Corporation’s Pegasus and Taurus XL launch vehicles, and Lockheed Martin’s Athena I and II rockets. The main launch sites are the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida and Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. Other launch locations include NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia, the Kwajalein Atoll in the South Pacific’s Republic of the Marshall Islands, and Kodiak Island in Alaska.
A recent success of the Launch Services Program was the Mars Science Laboratory mission carrying the Curiosity rover. The Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft was launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on November 26, 2011. Curiosity landed on August 6, 2012, near the foot of a mountain inside Gale Crater and carries 10 science instruments.
For more information about the Launch Services Program, visit http://www.nasa.gov/centers/kennedy/launchingrockets/index.html